On Saturday, Strikeforce will hold its first fight card since acquiring EliteXC and there's still no sight of Kimbo Slice. Is it an issue of money or is Kimbo simply shot mentally after being handed his first loss?
Javier Mendez, the matchmaker for Strikeforce, doesn't sound like he cares one way or the other. If Kimbo does come on board, Mendez says it's a whole new world for the big guy with this promotion:
"There's a lot of intrigue on him but let's be honest, Kimbo Slice is definitely a fighter but is he a polished MMA fighter? I say no."
What does that mean for Kimbo? He'll be treated like a prospect:
"The way I would structure it, he'd have to earn his shot just like anybody else," Mendez told Cage Writer. "To me, it's all up to Kimbo. What does he want? Does he want to start back out again? Is he able to contend with the best right now? No, I never thought he could."
Watch Mendez talk about the biggest name Strikeforce "acquired" from EliteXC (1:07 mark):
Mendez threw out the name Hasim Rahman as a possible opponent. Kimbo is simply a heavyweight prospect in Mendez's mind. If that's the case, how can you justify paying Kimbo anywhere near the $500,000 fight he was getting with EliteXC? Even if Kimbo agreed to a salary of $100,000, what compelling matchup can you find him? Would a Rahman-type fight for $100,000 after making millions as a boxer? It sounds like both the fighter and the promotion may be better off without one another.